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Doc Sara
Doc Sara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 952
Experience:  I am a dog and cat veterinarian with a lifetime of experience in our family veterinary hospital.
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I took my lab mix 78 lbs today to vet. He is 7 years old. He

Customer Question

I took my lab mix 78 lbs today to vet. He is 7 years old. He was walking with a bowed back and seemed to be in paid. When I touch his abdomen, he bows his back. The vet took xrays and says that he has air in his stomach and discovered arthitis in his back. He also said the air in his stomach is from gulping air and is from the pain.
I am not certain that it is his back. He didn't have a bowel movement today. Could he have blockage?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Doc Sara replied 11 months ago.

Hi there, I'm Dr. Sara. I'm a licensed veterinarian who works exclusively with dogs and cats. I'm sorry to hear that Mack hasn't been feeling well - I'll do my best to help.

Back pain is a very common diagnosis in dogs. For a dog who is reluctant to walk or walking all hunched up and who also dips away to avoid pressure when we touch the back, spinal pain is definitely #1 on my list. Dogs can have a varying amount of air in their stomachs normally, and it can be a bit more than usual if they've been panting or excited, like on the car ride to the vet. So based on your description, it sounds like your vet is probably on the right track. Not having a bowel movement is also consistent with discomfort in the back, since they sometimes are too uncomfortable to posture to have a bowel movement when their back is sore. Also, he may not have had a bowel movement if his appetite has been decreased in the last day or two. A GI obstruction has different symptoms than what you're seeing - the main symptom of a GI obstruction is vomiting. When they are obstructed, everything that they eat comes right back up because there's no way for it to move through the GI tract.

The most important thing at the moment is going to be to follow the instructions that your vet gave you and also keep them in the loop to make sure that Mack is doing what they expect him to do - if he's not, then they'll adjust their plan accordingly. I hope that this info is helpful - please let me know what other questions I can answer for you. We can continue to chat until I've covered all of your concerns.

~Dr. Sara

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Expert:  Doc Sara replied 11 months ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Mack. How is everything going?
Doc Sara